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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Byron Jorjorian Michigan Trip

Aren't these lovely? One of my favorite nature photographers, Byron Jorjorian, just came back from a trip to Michigan. The colors are spectacular and the scenes peaceful. I can almost smell the fresh air. I interviewed Byron for my blog a while ago and have featured him before because I have always loved his work. His photographs adorn some of my most enjoyable projects. Thanks for the view Byron!

Saturday, October 29, 2011


This is the view from my back door. I grew up is Rochester, NY so I am VERY familiar with snow even in October. Now I am in Northern Virginia and this seems quite surreal to me. All I can say is SNOWBALL FIGHT!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Favorite Market Find ~

I had a wonderful and successful time at High Point Market. From the fantastic Hickory Chair 100th Year Anniversary Party to finding the right treasures for my clients to seeing old friends and spending time with my dear friend, Paula (the other Paula). It was just the rejuvenation I needed.

As you may know, I was also looking for my new home. I felt so inspired and things were just clicking for me. I saw these at Halo Style ~ they made me very happy! I had not thought about something like these for my home but when I saw them. I fell in love. And love it such a wonderful feeling :-)

Monday, October 24, 2011

What's on the Walls Paula Grace?!

The one thing that Jim and I wanted was to get our art and photos up. The bare walls were making me crazy! We started that process in the family room ~ where we spend much of our time together.

I placed the triptych from our last home's living room above the mantel. I like them there. The fireplace screen is being made and the drapes have to be hung and the side table that my friend Andie is painting needs to placed.... all in good time!

We love our family photos. I configured this arrangement combining three from our last home. It seems like an ode to Lauren. Wait, there's more...

Those are all Lauren below. Ok, so the room is a bit of a shrine to her but that's the way it is in our family. Lauren is the center of everything. In this photo, I particularly like the truck outside the window ~ nice (not)! Where are those drapes?! They are actually hanging in my closet upstairs but the hardware has yet to arrive. Soon, soon.

Oh yeah, like the dogs playing patty cake?! Those are book ends. Do you see any books? Some day everything will be in its place. Hopefully it will happen before I get to old and forget where everything is!

More art will be hung soon. For now, it is at least some of it is placed where it will live.

Don't worry fellows ~ you'll be able to see over the railing soon!

Friday, October 21, 2011

My New Home... Onward!

My dear friend, Andie, who's artistry will appear in my home, convinced me to show my home in process. She said "the wallpaper inspired me to something to my home." I'm all for inspiration! As you may know, I painted the entire house before we moved in. The wallpaper went up in the first week. Where did it go? On the ceiling of course.

I used a Candice Olson wallcovering from York. The metallic background is a silvery blue. The textured motif is real sand. I placed it is the cathedral ceiling in the music room...

It looks dark in the first picture but it isn't really. I also placed it in the dining room tray ceiling...

The ceiling color is Brittany Blue by Benjamin Moore. I love the softness of it all. The metallic and sand shimmer when light hits it. I am so looking forward to the drapes being installed ~ that is happening very soon ~ YAY!. That will make it even cozier. Fabric adds so much. I opted for linen drapes in these rooms one shade darker than the White Chocolate walls.

I am off to High Point Market shortly. I adore going to Market when one of the people I am hunting treasure for is me!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Defrizz Hair Cocktail & Pete

Today I'm going to share a secret with you. I am completely gray. It's true. I started going gray when I was 22 years old thanks to genetics ~ dear ol' dad. I also got an analytical mind from him so its not all bad. I have friends who have that silky gray hair and have it completely natural. I envy them. I have the kinky, frizzy kind. Those that have it know exactly what I am talking about. It is not as bad as what is shown above... but pretty darn close. I color mine back to my natural color ~ the same color as my daughter's hair.

You can see in the picture above that is was before I discovered the miracle potion. With the invention of hair products that continually improve, I have perfected the defrizz hair cocktail. Seriously, I have. I have tried numerous products and several cocktails until I got it just right. Are you ready?!


and you get this...

This is an exaggeration! If you have wavy hair, your hair will remain wavy just not frizzy. I have wavy hair.

Now the proportion of product is important too. Products are always telling you to use about the size of a dime. I can safely say, a dime will never cut it on this hair of mine. I started off using the recommended amounts only to have my hair laugh at me ~ which is never fun. Here's the potion...

Use the size of a large nickle or small quarter ~ equal parts of the Lanza and Bumble and Bumble Styling Lotion to fill one large nickel and then add a full nickel's worth of the Bumble and Bumble Defrizz. My hair is just below my shoulders so if you have shorter or longer hair, the amount of potion you'll need may vary. Rub all the ingredients together in your hands and then apply to ends first then work your way up to the scalp. Comb through and style. DO NOT USE A HAIR DRYER AT ALL. Let your hair dry naturally. Once your hair is dry or at least almost dry (the dryer the better), comb with a large wide tooth comb or your fingers. DO NOT BRUSH IT. It is true you will have a wet head look for a period in the morning but it doesn't look to bad. I go to my BNI at 7:30 in the morning. They have never seen me with dry hair unless I have lunch or dinner with a member.

My hair is so much healthier than when I was trying to blow it out straight AND the cocktail makes my hair soooo soft.

There you have it. Give it a try and let me know how it works for you.

On another note ~ many of you know I am a music lover and inspired by it all the time. I just heard that one of my all time favorite musicians/song writers has been nominated to the Song Writing Hall of Fame. He and his band, The Who, are already in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but Pete Townshend has been nominated for the honor of Song Writer's Hall of Fame.

I say ABSO... FREAKIN'.... LUTELY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Why?

Need I say more??!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sparkle, Sparkle

Jim bought me my 10 year anniversary ring one year early! Don't you just love it? Do you think its to big??!!

No, no... its not a ring. Its a finial!

A beautiful Swarovski Crystal Finial from JF Drapery Hardware. It is part of their Evolution Collection. Click here to view the online catalog.

I love crystal. I grew up admiring my mom's Waterford crystal collection. She had pieces all over the living room. I have the collection now and have added to it. What I love most about crystal is, like a diamond, it captures the light...

and bounces it all over the room. Take a look...

These finials will adorn my living room... once I finally the rest of the hardware and drapes are ready. But for now, I'll just play with them in the light.

I'm sure I am not the only one guilty of admiring my engagement ring when it rests atop the steering wheel with the sun bounces off of it. That gives my joy. I don't do that as much now as when I first received it but every once in a while, it catches the light and my eye just so and I feel happy.

What makes you happy?

Friday, October 14, 2011

Just the Right Piece

Have you ever looked long and hard for that perfect piece? I have. I'm hoping I can spare some of you the trouble of finding a perfect end or table lamp. I'm going to share three of my favorites.

This first one is from John Richard. This is a beautiful little number called the Drake Side Table. Elegant and traditional but easily placed in a transitional or contemporary application where a nod to the past will be appreciated and provide the lovely diversity that each design craves.

The next one is from Hickory Chair. The East Paces Side Table designed by Suzanne Kasler.

I adore the fluidity of the legs. The beauty with this piece is that the finish is customizable. It can be rich and deep or light and airy making it one of the most versatile side/lamp table I have found.

Metal more your thing? How about this number?

These are the Marcel from Worlds Away. Again, the fluidity of the legs is so graceful. Sadly, I have to say the Marcel has been discontinued (boo hoo!) but they still have a limited supply. I have three of these in my home; two as night stands and one with a chess set placed upon it in between two chairs. Lauren and I play chess there. I'm glad I have them. They also are front and center in one of my favorite design projects...

Hmmm?!! I may need to buy some of their limited supply and keep them in inventory ~ I love them that much!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Paula Grace's New Home Continued

So far, you know my paint colors ~ here's a review...

Brittany Blue, Sandy White, Shaker Beige, and White Chocolate. There is also a pinch of...

Plymouth Brown ~ coffer ceiling in the family room. All colors are from Benjamin Moore.

I have wallpapered the cathedral ceiling in the music room and the tray ceiling in the dining room. These rooms are extensions of each other so the wallpaper in the same...

A Candice Olson design from York Wallcoverings. I love the way it looks! The ceilings in the rooms with this wallpaper are painted in the Brittany Blue. It really is pretty. They go nicely with my existing chandeliers.

The chandelier in the dining room went from this...

to this.

In the music room from this...

to this.
Both from Fine Art Lamps. The chandeliers that conveyed with the house are beautiful and good quality but they are just not my style.

I'm hesitant to show pictures of the rooms at this point because they seem so far from finished. I'm going to Market later this month. My plan is to finish them further. Maybe then. Unless you really want to see it from beginning to end (gulp!), I'll show them to you.

To round out the lighting, the new chandelier over the kitchen table went from this...
to this...

A Visual Comfort beauty.

Now I am in the process selecting chairs for the music room (it had a grand piano in it before so it will forever be known as the music room), selecting and designing fabrics, finding the just right counter stools, a new console table... and pieces for my foyer. I think I found the table but I am designing the chest. That is always the fun part for me... designing my own pieces.

My window treatments are either up (woven shades) or being fabricated as I type (drapes). The hardware should be here... hmmmm??? I wonder where it is??!! I feel a phone call coming on.

Details, details......

I DO have a grand plan though, which intimately involves Paula Grace Designs, Inc.

Stay tuned.

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Fall Day in Rochester

This weekend, we took a whirlwind trip to Upstate New York ~ Rochester to be exact. We had relatives coming in for an overnight visit from Chile, where my mom is from. The entire ride up and back were breathtaking foliage scenes.

On Saturday, the weather was gorgeous. We spent most of the time with my family. Lauren enjoyed riding the go-carts with her cousins...

and feeding the pigeons at Schoen Place.

I enjoyed seeing my family even though it was a brief trip... and I always enjoy seeing Lauren having a carefree skip in the park. A happy lark just taking in the scenery and sunshine.

Did the adults play too?
Of course! I'm pretty sure Jim won that race. I raced too. I did not win... but I sure had a lot of fun trying to :-)
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